“That’s nice; it’s mighty nice. You be good to that boy, and you won’t lose anything by it. How do you and Morton get on?”
“First-rate, I hope. He’s treated me generously.”
Then she fastened her eyes upon him with quizzical severity.
“Young man, the ‘Advertiser’ seems to think Morton Bassett is crooked. What do you think about it?”
Dan gasped and stammered at this disconcerting question.
She rested her arms on the table and bent toward him, the humor showing in her eyes.
“If he is crooked, young man, you needn’t think you have to be as big a sinner as he is! You remember that Sally Owen told you that. Be your own boss. Morton’s a terrible persuader. Funny for me to be talking to you this way; I don’t usually get confidential so quick. I guess”—and her eyes twinkled—“we’ll have to consider ourselves old friends to make it right.”
“You are very kind, indeed, Mrs. Owen. I see that I have a responsibility about Allen. I’ll keep an eye on him.
“Drop in now and then. I eat a good many Sunday dinners alone when I’m at home, and you may come whenever you feel like facing a tiresome old woman across the table.”
She followed him into the hall, where they ran into Sylvia, who had been upstairs saying good-night to her grandfather. Mrs. Owen arrested Sylvia’s flight through the hall.
“Sylvia, I guess you and Mr. Harwood are already acquainted.”
“Except,” said Dan, “that we haven’t been introduced!”
“Then, Miss Garrison, this is Mr. Harwood. He’s a Yale College man, so I read in the paper.”
“Oh, I already knew that!” replied Sylvia, laughing.
“At Wellesley please remember, Miss Garrison, about the Kalamazoo cousins,” said Dan, his hand on the front door.
“I guess you young folks didn’t need that introduction,” observed Mrs. Owen. “Don’t forget to come and see me, Mr. Harwood.”
THE MAP ABOVE BASSETT’S DESK
Sometimes, in the rapid progress of their acquaintance, Allen Thatcher exasperated Harwood, but more often he puzzled and interested him. It was clear that the millionaire’s son saw or thought he saw in Dan a Type. To be thought a Type may be flattering or not; it depends upon the point of view. Dan himself had no illusions in the matter. Allen wanted to see and if possible meet the local characters of whom he read in the newspapers; and he began joining Harwood in visits to the hotels at night, hoping that these wonderful representatives of American democracy might appear. Harwood’s acquaintance was widening; he knew, by sight at least, all the prominent men of the city and state, and after leaving the newspaper he still spent one or two evenings a week lounging in the hotel corridors. Tradition survived of taller giants before the days of the contemporaneous